Need to Move?

Some curtains and throw pillows and it'll feel just like Poughkeepsie.
Some curtains and throw pillows and it'll feel just like Poughkeepsie.
First of all, I’d like to thank the two people who actually pay attention to my blogs, but I think it’s best if I admit that I’m not going to run for president for 2012. I know, I know, you’re both seriously disappointed, but preliminary polls showed that I stood a better chance of being arrested than I did of winning any election. Even for something as meaningless as President of the United States of America. Obviously, lofty goals like “Dog Catcher” or “Meter Maid” are well beyond me. Part of that has to do with the fact that I posed partially nude and got tattooed on TV. On the other hand, unlike the “Family Values” stunod from Cali, I never had a love-child while married. Of course, I never did steroids so I could be the preeminent pin-up for gay teens the world over either. I guess I’ve been slacking and that’s why I work here instead of in the government. Believe it or not, I’m okay with that.

But every now and then we do something that might, if we’re honest with ourselves, require us to move to a new planet. Oh sure, it may seem picayune now, but that five way tryst which involved a drag queen and a goat ends up on YouTube and the next thing you know relocation seems like a good idea. My homie, Damien Wild, was kind enough to offer me a celestial alternative. He noted that the Huffington Post said there’s another planet for us pathetic losers can live on.

Scientists may be just steps from discovering the first habitable planet beyond our own.

Gliese 581d, a planet orbiting the red-dwarf star Gliese, may be the first real candidate for human expansion. That is, if it didn’t take 3,000 lifetimes to get there, according to Science Daily.

581d is the third candidate for becoming the first hospitable exoplanet from the Gliese system, but the previous two candidates have both been ruled out. Gliese 581e was ruled too cold, and 581g turned out to be entirely nonexistent.

In order to determine that this planet was actually a viable candidate, the scientists behind the new report used a new computer model, which uses methods similar to those used to measure Earth’s own climate, to analyze the atmosphere of 581d.

There are no days on Gliese 581d; one side is perpetually light and one side is perpetually dark. People thought this would mean that the night side would be perpetually frozen. But a new study by the Laboratoire de Météorologie Dynamique at the Institute Pierre Simon Laplace found that because of the local star’s red light that penetrates deep into the heavy carbon atmosphere, the planet regulates heat quite well. Downside: It will always be a sort of red-hued dusk. And gravity is twice as strong, meaning it won’t be too pleasant to walk around. But at least we’ll be able to live there. The problem, as with most things in space, is the distance. At 20 light years away, it would take 300,000 years to get there.

But maybe we should be trying to get there a lot faster.

A new study (completely unrelated to the Gliese 581d report) has determined that at our current pace of using resources we’re going to need two Earths by 2030. While Gliese 581d seems a bit far as a candidate, the Living Planet Report isn’t actually suggesting we search out another planet, but is instead emphasizing how quickly we’re depleting Earth’s resources and highlighting the urgent need to change our course.

But with over 2 billion potential alien earths out there, there has to be at least one backup for Earth, right?

Lets face it, there’s a lot of places for us to inhabit in the universe. And we can get to them much faster once we work out viable methods for travelling near the speed of light. Or, if physicists are to believed, and we all know they’re nuts, faster than light travel is eminently possible.

On the other hand, do we really want to be colored red and weigh twice what we weigh now? Oh, why not? It isn’t like that You Tube video’s ever going away.

Listen to Bill McCormick on WBIG AM 1280, every Thursday morning around 9:10!

Listen to Bill McCormick on WBIG AM 1280, every Thursday morning around 9:10!

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